House Defeats EV Charging Infrastructure Bill

A bill that garnered two Republican votes in the Senate could not do so in the House.

Senate Bill 187(S) would have started to resolve one of the big inequities in the Electric Vehicle (EV) market today: access to charging infrastructure. Right now, if you reside in any of our state’s cities, you are likely to also have to deal with street parking. That means that there is no way to install an EV charging station at your home, even if you can afford the costs of purchasing an EV (which have been falling dramatically over the past two years). This legislation would require that all municipalities with a population over 30k have a process in place to help those with street parking or a right of way issue to be permitted to have an EV charging station installed for their personal use. Ultimately, with this bill, it will be up to each city to set up a process, so long as they stay within the bounds of the law.

The bill needed a two thirds majority vote to pass, so that means it needed 28 votes. It cleared that hurdle in the Senate, in a 16-5 vote. But in the House, it “failed” 23-16-2. All Republicans voted no and Andria Bennett and Stephanie Bolden were absent. Bill Sponsor Krista Griffith voted no as a procedural move so as to be able to bring the bill back later. But even if the two missing Dems and Griffith all voted yes, that would be 26 votes. We needed two Republicans. Supposed moderates like Mike Smith and Mike Ramone and Bryan Shupe could not be bothered. They have to prove that they are with Lauren Witke rather than the future.

Senate Bill 187(S) would have made it easier and more convenient to own an electric vehicle in this State in the years to come, resulting in increased purchases of electric vehicles, promoting cleaner air and water, and resulting in improved health outcomes for Delawareans and a reduction of greenhouse gases to curtail global warming.

Senate Bill 187(S) Sponsors Yes VotesNo Votes
McBride, Hansen, Ennis, Gay, Mantzavinos, Sokola, Townsend, WalshSenate Passed 16-5. Brown Ennis Gay Hansen Lockman Mantzavinos Paradee Pinkney Poore S.McBride Sokola Sturgeon Townsend Walsh Lopez Pettyjohn Bonini, Hocker, Lawson, Richardson, Wilson
Griffith, Baumbach, Lambert, MorrisonHouse Defeated 23-16-2. Baumbach Bentz Freel Bush Carson Chukwuocha Cooke Dorsey-Walker Heffernan K.Johnson K.Williams Kowalko Lambert Longhurst Lynn Matthews Minor-Brown Mitchell Morrison Osienski S.Moore Schwartzkopf Wilson-Anton Bennett (Absent), Bolden (Absent), Briggs King Collins D.Short Dukes Gray Griffith Hensley M.Smith Morris Postles Ramone Shupe Smyk Spiegelman Vanderwende Yearick
Current Status:Sent back to the Senate apparently, somehow.

Electric vehicles are becoming more and more popular. Between 2012 and 2016, EV sales grew at an annual rate 32%. In 2017, growth in sales reached 45%. Batteries for EVs have become much cheaper in the last 10 years, enabling EVs to compete with traditional, fossil-fueled vehicles. In addition, major vehicle manufacturers are pledging to go all electric. Some researchers are predicting that EV sales will outnumber those of traditional, combustion engine vehicles by 2040.

However, only minimal electrical charging infrastructure is available today.

Senate Bill 187(S) will require municipalities with a population of 30,000 or more to develop a procedure to obtain permission for the installation of an electric vehicle charging station on real property zoned for residential use that abuts a residential street, so that property owners can install charging stations on their property.

Senator McBride: “The market has made clear: electric vehicles are the cars of the future. This shift is critical to protecting our environment and it represents one of the most significant changes to our society since the advent of the internet. If we do not begin to build out our electric vehicle infrastructure immediately, we will be both unprepared for the inevitable changes ahead of us and potentially miss out on the environmental benefits of this growing field. That is why I’m joining with Rep. Krista Griffith to introduce SB 187 to facilitate the installation of electric vehicle charging stations along curbsides in Delaware’s largest – and most densely populated – cities where on-property parking and charging is limited. Now is the time to act.”

“Electric vehicles are the future. Our environment demands it and the market has made it inevitable. SB 187 is an important part of building out our EV infrastructure.”

Representative Griffith: “I have long been committed to putting forth legislation that reduces reliance on fossil fuels, particularly as it pertains to automobiles and transportation. I’m proud to team up with Sen. Sarah McBride on SB 187, which will require Delaware’s largest cities to install EV charging stations, promoting the use of these environmentally-forward vehicles. We’ve seen over these past years that electric vehicles are becoming more popular. With battery prices decreasing more and more, EVs have become a reasonable competitor with traditional fossil-fueled vehicles. This legislation will help support the creation of infrastructure needed to support these vehicles.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

2 comments on “House Defeats EV Charging Infrastructure Bill

  1. cassandram

    How much evidence do we need that the GOP is not here to either govern or to help Delaware be a place more people want to live in? If you are attentive to the plans of car companies here, they are absolutely shifting to EV cars. The presale of the F150 Lightning is sold out — and that is 160,000 trucks that people are waiting on. And here we are with a GOP who wants us to be the most backward state in the nation. This is a good time to work on charging stations too — there’s tons of work on making them smaller and integrating them with other infrastructure (like including charging capability to street lights) which would be ideal since we have an influx of funds to improve fixed infrastructure.

    Really sad that even the Moderates-for-Show couldn’t vote for this. A couple of them live in Districts VERY interested in this capacity.

  2. This bill should have passed!

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